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Weatherproofing Windows for Winter

By on September 18, 2015 in Home Maintenance

Tips for Weatherproofing Windows:

This inspector faced ridiculous heating bills last year in New Hampshire during what is probably going to be labeled as the worst winter in history. So after paying more than $4000 for the winter on heating oil, I am resolved to not allow a repeat of that this coming winter.

So what can one do, short of replacing all your windows for an average cost of $9,720 (according to an article in Remodeling Magazine) for 10 windows?

Well here are a few options to consider:

  1. Weather stripping over the interior of the windows. You can purchase these kind of kits at any home improvement store out there. I’ve personally used these kits on my windows and they do work – they provide a decent amount of weather proofing. The downsides are that when you remove the weather stripping cover after the winter, it leaves a sticky residue on the inside window casing which is a pain to remove. The other downside is that the covers block the natural sunlight from getting through. And as I experienced with one of my family members, anyone who experiences problems with depression caused by the diminished sunlight in winter , suffers greatly with the windows blocked.
  2. Now the next option is one that I am about to try with my windows – actually removing the interior casing around the windows and spraying expanding spray foam insulation in between the window jambs. This will effectively seal any gaps or areas where there was no insulation and should help with insulating the interior of my home for the coming winter.
  3. You can of course add insulating strips to the window seams as well. This helps to prevent drafts. And hardly worth mentioning is the snake method. Hollow tubes filled with sand and applied to the window seams will block the flow of air through the cracks.
  4. And of course the old standard – drapes are more than just decorative folks. They do offer some protection against drafts, albeit not on the level of the first few options. There are drapes available with insulating lining which offer more protection.

Whatever you decide to do, at least you will be helping out in some way on your heating bill for the coming winter. And these days, every penny seems to count.